James Krueger has died.[@@]

Krueger, 62, a longtime member of the sales force at Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Appleton, Wis., suffered from pancreatic cancer, according to an obituary that appeared in The Post-Crescent.

Kruger held many professional designations and was active in many insurance industry organizations. He was a past president of the Wisconsin Association of Life Underwriters; a trustee of the American College, Bryn Mawr, Pa.; and a trustee of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, Falls Church, Va.

Krueger was the current president of GAMA International, Falls Church.

“Jim represented all of the attributes that make our profession an honorable and dignified one,” says Robert Baccigalupi, president-elect of GAMA.

GAMA has reacted to Krueger’s passing by renaming its “First in Class Award” the “James H. Krueger First in Class Award.”

The GAMA board renamed the award May 2, and Krueger learned of the change May 6, GAMA says.

GAMA says it changed the name of the award to recognize Krueger’s leadership at GAMA, his commitment to the institution of life insurance, his passionate support for life insurance organizations, and his devotion to his company, his clients and his colleagues.

The First in Class Award was established in 2000, and more than 135 field leaders have qualified for the First in Class Award since its inception, GAMA says.